The New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (NEASC-CIHE) is now the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE). NECHE has taken on the functions formerly performed by the CIHE. The move follows concerns raised by officials last year that the NEASC’s Commission on Higher Education wasn’t a “separate and independent” organization as required by ED. Now NECHE will function as an independent organization, fulfilling the federal requirements.
The 2019-2020 FAFSA launches on October 1, 2018. 2019-2020 FAFSA applicants will be required to provide their 2017 tax year information on the form. This year, applicants will have two ways to complete the form online by either completing the application at FAFSA.gov or by using the new myStudentAid app to complete the form right form their smart phone. The IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) is reportedly ready to go for the 2019-2020 year too, so, we’re all keeping our fingers crossed that this year, it all works as expected.
This year’s Federal Student Aid Training Conference will take place in Atlanta Georgia at the Georgia World Conference Center from November 27, 2018 through November 30, 2018. Registration and housing are now open, and you can register online at https://fsaconferences.ed.gov/
In July, U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos granted the Senior Department Official an extension to review and respond to a trove of documents related to ACICS’ petition for continued recognition as U.S. Department of Education accreditor. Secretary DeVos granted the extension after the SDO requested it. The SDO has been given until September 4, 2018 to file the response. You can read the memo from ED on ACICS website here.
Did you know that the Common Origination and Disbursement System’s heaviest processing days are on Monday’s and Tuesdays? During most times of the year, the system runs well, however during peak processing periods batch processing may take longer than usual. We’re entering another peak processing period as schools simultaneously close out old program years, disburse summer aid and gear up for the upcoming school year and begin originating aid. FSA recommends that schools that have the flexibility to process aid on another day, do so.
Beginning on June 15-17, 2018, Federal Student Aid will move the TEACH Grant Exit counseling module from the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS®) Student Access website to the StudentLoans.gov website. As part of the implementation, Counseling reporting functions will move from the NSLDS Professional Access website to the COD Web Site. For more information about this transition including the impact on borrowers and schools, check out this helpful summary provided by Federal Student Aid.
Mark your calendars!
Saturday June 30, 2018 will be the last date a student can submit an initial 2017-2018 FAFSA application. FAFSAs must be received by the Central Processing System by midnight on June 30, 2018.
ICYMI – The New York Education Department Bureau of Proprietary School Supervision has issued a ruling banning, arbitration clauses on proprietary and career training school enrollment agreements as well as financing plans extended by schools. The ruling includes conditions under which “permissive, post-dispute arbitration may be approved.”
The Department of Ed released a great PowerPoint about correcting Gainful Employment information schools have reported to NSLDS. This presentation is a great accompaniment to the new NSLDS GE user Guide for anyone managing your school’s GE reporting. It provides a nice overview of the data and details of GE reporting which is useful for people new to GE reporting. It also breaks down the process for correcting, updating and troubleshooting submission issues.
An update to the NSLDS Gainful Employment User Guide was released in March. The update includes new information about to help schools report more accurately and gives info on how to correct GE information you’ve already reported to NSLDS. Corrections are an important part of the GE reporting cycle. Errors can affect programmatic rates.